Tuesday, December 20, 2022
Luke 1:26 - 38
Full Of Grace
Yesterday, we see how Zechariah’s questioning the Angel Gabriel leads to him losing his speech for the duration of Elizabeth’s pregnancy. In today’s Gospel, Mary questions Gabriel and…gets an answer. At first, it doesn’t make sense.
As with so many things, the intention behind the words makes all the difference. Zechariah wasn’t asking an innocent question; he was challenging a miracle offered by God. On the other hand, Mary was marveling and sincerely wondering: “How can this be?” She knew how babies were made and that nothing was too much for God.
How do we know? Because Gabriel replies to her the way, you would reply to a child asking an innocent question about how something works: “The Holy Spirit will come upon you,” he says, “and the power of the Most High will overshadow you.”
She was already “full of grace,” perfectly and completely grace-filled. God made her that way. And we have evidence of it from how Gabriel treats her with that kind of reverence normally reserved for angels.
A four-year-old will innocently ask, “How?” without malice. It’s different from how a fourteen-year-old will demand to know why.
Mary is innocent and utterly open to the Holy Spirit. She stands as an ongoing inspiration to each of us, as we waLuke through the last days of Advent that we may be as open to joy as she was.
God, you made me. Open me to the joy right in front of me, to the gifts you have for me in everyday life. Make my questions fruitful and innocent without the malice and demand of disbelief.
Act of Kindness
As temperatures drop, let’s not forget those in need. Drop socks, toothpaste, razors, treats, etc., at the local homeless shelter or your church pantry. Sharing your fortune during the last week of Advent is a beautiful act of kindness.